Oconomowoc, WI – The Gary SouthShore RailCats (7-4) flexed their might on Wednesday evening at Wisconsin Brewing Company Park as they brushed the Lake Country DockHounds (3-7) aside 6-2.
As they did in the series opener, the RailCats benefitted from the long ball to draw first blood in the top of the second inning. LG Castillo roped a base hit and Francisco Del Valle walked, setting up Victor Nova with two runners on and one out. He responded by launching a no-doubt home run to right field, his second of the season, placing Gary SouthShore ahead 3-0.
However, unlike the previous contest, the DockHounds lineup could not muster a response against RailCats starter Edward Cuello. He kept the opposition off balance throughout his six-inning start, allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out four as he picked up his first win of the season.
Before he departed, though, the RailCats stepped up to provide him with some more run support. Jesus Marriaga got hit by a pitch and promptly stole second base to provide Gary SouthShore a runner in scoring position, and the next batter, Emmanuel Tapia immediately brought him home. His double to the right-center field wall upped their advantage to four runs.
Marriaga stepped up again in the seventh inning to increase the RailCats’ lead to five. Michael Woodworth stroked an automatic double to lead off the frame, and after swiping third base, Marriaga’s sacrifice fly completed his trip around the bases.
The RailCats kept the runs flowing in the eighth as they plated yet another, bringing their edge up to six. In a bases-loaded, one-out situation, Gio Díaz recorded a fielder’s choice, tallying Nova in the process.
Meanwhile, the bullpen emerged to lock Lake Country down in the seventh and eighth innings to support Gary SouthShore’s late-game insurance runs. Jack Eisenbarger tossed a perfect seventh, and even though Joan Valdez surrendered a base hit, he coaxed three groundouts to keep the DockHounds off the board.
The DockHounds finally cracked the scoreboard with two outs in the bottom of the ninth on a Pat Adams two-run single, but that was all they could muster as the ‘Cats secured the win.
The RailCats go for their fourth straight series win to open the season tomorrow as they take on the DockHounds at 11:05 a.m. in their annual School Day Game at Wisconsin Brewing Company Park. The game will be streamed on www.aabaseball.tv and broadcast over the radio on 95.9 WEFM and the Gary SouthShore RailCats Broadcast Network through the Mixlr app.